The only thing better than visiting Venice is visiting the Venetian Lagoon, especially if you’re not looking for a typically touristy Italian experience. Everyone goes to Venice, but not everyone makes it off the beaten track – and how are you supposed to stumble across hidden Venetian gems that way? A walking tour is the perfect answer. Ferries and your own two feet will whisk you from cathedrals with bell towers just begging to be climbed to museums filled with treasures from centuries ago to…dragon bones? By the time you take the last step of this tour, you’ll no longer be an outsider in the Venetian Lagoon. After all, once you become privy to some of the most elusive and secretive sights of Italy, aren’t you already halfway to becoming a local?
Tour Torcello Cathedral
Start your journey by visiting the gorgeous Cathedral of Santa Maria dell’Assunta. Built in 639, with its imposing eleventh-century bell tower (which you’re welcome to scale if you can budget the energy and extra money it will cost) and mosaics from the Byzantine era, any art or history lover will immediately feel at home.
Find Lace and Grace at the Lace Museum
No need to unlace your boots on the ferry ride from Torcello Island to Burano – it’s just half an hour long. Once you arrive, head to Scuola del Merletto, a lace and textile museum with fabric from the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. A different kind of art from the mosaics in Torcello Cathedral but no less beautiful, and featuring intricate gowns owned by past royalty.
See San Martino Church
Only a five minute walk from the lace museum, San Martino is a Roman Catholic church built in the sixteenth century. Tucked away from the crowds and tourism you often find in Venice, this serene church is just off the beaten path. For optimum photo opportunities, make sure you climb the leaning bell tower and take advantage of its famous view of the breathtaking Venetian Lagoon.
Blow Some Time at the Murano Glass Museum
Relax for an hour while a ferry whisks you to the Murano Glass Museum. Murano is known as the Glass Island for a reason – find out why at the museum. Get the inside scoop with guided tours on the craft and history of the Venetian art of glassmaking, from fifteenth-century techniques and products to their contemporary counterparts. And if you’re still looking for souvenirs to bring home, you won’t find a gift more mind-blowing than blown glass.
Discover Dragon Bones at Santa Maria e San Donato
The last suggested attraction we have is simply five minutes away from the Murano Glass Museum. Originally built in the seventh century and, just like Torcello Cathedral, the Church of Santa Maria e San Donato is known for its Byzantine mosaics and impressive architecture. If you’re looking for magic and mystery, you need look no further – legend has it that it hosts the bones of a slain dragon.
How to Get to the Venetian Lagoon
While you’ll enjoy every second of walking as you tour the Lagoon, the last thing you want to do is have to walk all the way from London! Have no fear, travel is inexpensive and easy. Flights from London Stansted to Venice Treviso (TSF) Airport are easily affordable and only two hours long.
There’s no need to deal with the stress of navigating how to get from the airport to your accommodation either. If you want to sit back, relax and marvel as the Italian countryside sails by, Shuttle Direct’s airport transfer service is a fast and reliable option.
Where to Stay
Ca’ Mazzega Murano Grand Canal View Apartments – Whether you’re staying one night or one month, Ca’ Mazzega Murano Grand Canal View Apartments are an affordable and sociable choice. The price and apartment-style living make this the ideal place to meet other travellers who are also looking to immerse themselves in Venetian culture.
Ca’ Torcello – To stay at Ca’ Torcello is to go back in time. Originally a fisherman’s house, this holiday home has been renovated into a quaint three-bedroom bed and breakfast. Book a room here if you’re looking to sleep alongside history itself.
Murano Palace – My final suggestion is Murano Palace. Another bed and breakfast, it is snugly situated near a bridge and almost hidden on a quiet side street. Stylish and historic, its life began as a country house in the eighteenth century and proceeded to become a palace in the twentieth century. Although this B&B is tucked away from the public eye and therefore goes overlooked by many, it is a great, centrally located option.
About Shuttle Direct
Whether your reason for travel is business in Europe or pleasure in North Africa, we have you covered here at Shuttle Direct. With safe and professional airport transfers, our passion is getting you where you need to go. Take some of the stress out of travelling by letting our team get you where you need to go.